Sep 30, 2012 10:00am EDT
happened in benghazi in fact was initially a spontaneous reaction to what transpired hours before in cairo, almost a copycat of the demonstrations against our facility in cairo which were prompted of course by the video. >> there was a caveat there. she said the fbi was still investigating. but the thought was it was a spontaneous reaction. a couple of days before that, the libyan president said, no, in fact, al qaeda was behind this attack. and then days later, after ambassador rice is on this program and other programs, the president's spokesman jay carney says this. it is, i think, self-evident that what happened in benghazi was a terrorist attack. well, if it was self-evident, why didn't the president call this exactly what it was, an act of terror on the anniversary of 9/11? >> well, this is an event of great interest, obviously, to the public, to the news media. information was being provided realtime. obviously, you're going to know more two weeks after an event than a week after an event. and as ambassador rice was -- that was the information from the intelligence community.
Sep 16, 2012 10:00am EDT
today, our current assessment is that what happened in benghazi was, in fact, initially a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired hours before in cairo, almost a copycat of the demonstrations against our facility in cairo, which were prompted, of course, by the video. what we think then transpired in benghazi is that opportunistic extremist elements came to the consulate as this was unfolding. they came with heavy weapons, which unfortunately, are readily available in postrevolutionary libya. and it escalated into a much more violent episode. obviously, that's our best judgment now. we'll await the results of the investigation, and the president has been very clear we'll work with the libyan authorities to bring those responsible to justice. >> was there a failure here that this administration is responsible for, whether it's an intelligence failure, a failure to see this coming, or a failure adequately protect u.s. embassies and installations from a spontaneous reaction like this? >> david, i don't think so. first of all, we had no actionable intelligence to suggest that any